Would you buy a disposable digital camera?

Discussion in 'Community' started by Doctor Q, Sep 14, 2003.

  1. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

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    #1
    The Dakota Digital Single-Use Camera has been out over a month now. I've used 35mm film cameras, digital still cameras, and disposable film cameras, but I can't see why anyone would buy a disposable digital camera. They cost more ($11 plus processing) than a disposable film camera and I don't see why the images would be any better, whether you get prints or a CD-ROM. Am I missing the point or is this a product without a market?
     
  2. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

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    #2
    agreed. i don't see any point to this... clearly the quality can't be that good if you just throw the puppy away... oh well,
     
  3. Doctor Q thread starter Administrator

    Doctor Q

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    #3
    "Disposable" is really the wrong word. You don't throw it out - you return it to a "participating Ritz Camera or Wolf Camera location" for processing, and they extract your photos. From the review, I conclude that you can't upload the pictures to your computer yourself, so that's your only choice. They say that they "recycle" the camera. Other than changing the batteries, they may have nothing to do except erase your photos and repackage the camera for the next person.
     
  4. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

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    #4
    I'm not sure that I would want the disposable. Like the idea of being to download to a computer. It saves on having the clutter of regular pictures!
     
  5. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #5
    just go out and buy a good 2 mega pixel or better camera like a fuji2600 and you will be happy. i have used the crap out of mine and i think they are down to about 175 bucks or better. very easy to use with iphoto, in fact one button download, digital and optical zoom very nice all around in your pocket camera. even takes movies so forget that disposable stuff and get a good digital.
     
  6. rainman::|:| macrumors 603

    rainman::|:|

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    #6
    i'm sure if you needed whatever advantage this provided, you could just rent a digital camera for a day from a friend for $10... that's if you only need it once in your lifetime, and can't justify buying a digital camera. Or, you could do it the normal way, and scan the photos at your local library-- i really have no idea why such a product exists, perhaps the CMO of this company simply refused to tell the marketing division "no".

    :rolleyes:

    pnw
     
  7. WinterMute Moderator emeritus

    WinterMute

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    #7
    I think Doctor Q is right it's a bit of a scam to re-use cameras and charge you for the experience.

    Given that you can get prints for a CD at almost any photo outlet now, it makes no sense. Plus a good ASA400 disposable is probably going to be much better quality than the digi, unless its a 3 megapixel disposable?

    Didn't think so...:D
     
  8. Giaguara macrumors 6502a

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  9. tazo macrumors 68040

    tazo

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    #9
    i just wish i had money for like a 3-4 megapixel camera..then i could start taking real photos...
     
  10. Kwyjibo macrumors 68040

    Kwyjibo

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    #10
    i've read about things like this that were actually 35mm cameras and they just gave uthe photo CD instead of real pictures back and called it digital
     
  11. Doctor Q thread starter Administrator

    Doctor Q

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    #11
    One advantage of a digital camera is that you can erase a photo and take it over again with different settings until it comes out the way you want. But nobody that picky would be using a one-use camera.

    I think the two main uses for one-use cameras are: (1) when you find yourself away from home without a camera, e.g., you went on vacation and forgot it; (2) for big parties, such as a wedding reception, where you can leave them around on tables and let everyone take photos for you. Neither of these "impulse shot" situations require a digital camera.
     
  12. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

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    #12
    The reason I got my digital camera is so I wouldn't have to go to Wal Mart to get my pictures processed. I bought one for my trip to Europe and for projects where I'd need to take pictures to put into powerpoint and all. All these uses centered around a single aspect of the digital camera and that was being able to plug it into the USB port and send them directly into my computer without processing and scanning. The disposable camera concept completely goes against that and in my eyes defeats the entire purpose of a digital camera. If you want a picture CD, you can do that with a regular camera when you get them processed. So where is the difference? If it is picture quality, there is HD film you can buy that is supposed to be of much higher quality, too. So again, there seems to be no use for a disposable digital camera besides a marketing ploy.
     
  13. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #13
    I think if I went to the beach or somewhere else my good camera was inconvenient to carry or might suffer damage, I would definitely consider a disposable camera. However, I find most compromises unacceptable so it would have to be proven good first.
     
  14. Durandal7 macrumors 68040

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    #14
    This defeats the point of a digital camera. If I have to go and get my "film" developed I may as well use one of my high-quality 35mm cameras and scan the images in when I get home.
     
  15. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #15
    I really have to laugh at this one.....but there might be some uses - someone who doesn't have their own computer at home and wants to email pics of an event to friends from work, etc.....but its still a small market.

    I'd buy one just to take it apart and see if I could extract the images myslef ;)

    D
     
  16. Moxiemike macrumors 68020

    Moxiemike

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    #16
    I dunno why everyone is against disposable cameras in general. :)

    My friend's mom used to shoot with NOTHING but disposable, ASA400 cameras, and she recently had her work shown in the Three Rivers Arts Festival (one of most historical AFs in the country, with 44 years of history) as an emerging artist!

    I bet she'd out-photograph 90% of the shutterbugs who *think* they're good at photography.

    Clearly showing that it's not the CAMERA but the OPERATOR. :)

    As far as these digitals go, I could see someone like myself, who owns a VERY high end digital, and who wants something to just take snaps with here and there but doesn't wanna invest the cash in a PNS digital, when I could plop that cash towards some new lenses for mine. :)

    And yes, you CAN review and delete with the Ritz disposable. For the record, I know "weekend warriors" who erase and preview more with their Canon A70 PNS cams than I do with the D100. :) The more amateur your talent, the more necesary it is to review and delete.

    As far as image quality goes, I'll let you all know soon. :) One of the photo sites i'm involved in has organized a little project where one of the guys bought the camera, and he'll take one photo, send it to the next person who'll take one photo and so on and so forth.

    When we take the cam in for processing (you can receive a CD or prints or both) we'll be posting them to a photo forum. And remember, all of the people on this forum shoot with either D100's, D1x's or D1h's and are pro's or semi-pro's. Very high end pro cams!

    We're just doing this for fun. And THAT's exactly the point of disposable digitals. Something fun.

    Oh. By the way Doctor Q, you should really look at the packaging: There's NO extra cost for processing. You return it for a FREE cd and index print, and can get individual prints made from ritz for as low as .39 cents per.

    Also, it's 25 exposures... and a comparable Kodak single use is 27 exposures for $8.99 and you pay for prints/cd. :)

    IMHO, it's a perfect thing to have in you camera bag when you wanna sketch stuff but don't wanna waste the space to shoot a raw image or jpg with your D100. :D You can grab and sketch a quick shot of an area, so you can, say, go back and get the shot with the proper lighting. It's possible I might NEVER take the thing in for processing, having no need to ever print these 'sketches'.

    I might buy one just for that purpose. :D
     
  17. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #17
    First off - I'm not talking about the person doing the shooting - that's irrelevant to the discussion. The thing is itts not film, its digital. It doesn't have the convenience of digital (instant viewing of the image) - There is no lcd to display the image.

    Inorder to get the images you have to return the camera to Ritz, they download the images to a CD and give it back to you. You have to wait hours/days to get the images back, load them up to your pc and just to look at them? That's just not a very efficient use of digital. And at 2MP you can buy an el cheapo digital camera well under $200 that would give you the ease of using digital, one that keeps the processing out of the loop.

    You go right ahead and buy these and go through the processing and tell if you like it better than carrying around a small point and shoot digital for the setup shots....like I said above, its a small niche market for those who don't have the resources available to get digital images.

    This is basically an attempt for the film processing companies to stay in business - digital cameras are the future, Kodak is hurting, and the whole thing is shifting. By keeping people locked in to 'processing' the pics they're trying to keep the dependancies to the service - where they make the money.

    D
     
  18. Moxiemike macrumors 68020

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    #18
    First off, the processing is free. Second, in the case of me shooting one for sketching, I wouldn't need the cd back for a few days. That said, it probably takes about an hour. I'll call my Ritz here and find out.

    Thirdly, Kodak has nothing to do with this! :) Dakota is the ritz "house brand' and Ritz surely isn't suffering from the "processing" situation. I get all of my 4x6s, 8x10s and 11x14s done there. Cheaper, and better quality than on a photo printer. When I wanna go big, i use my Designjet 120nr. So ritz is CERTAINLY not suffering from a lack of people processing film. :D

    That said, I'd rather save the $200 from buying an el cheapo PNS digital and invest that 200 towards another speedlight, a nice 80-200 lens, a good Gitzo or Manfrotto tripod...a disposable digital might last me a couple months. There's rarely a time when I need to sketch shots. Which is why I gave my dad my Coolpix 885. Hardly used it. But 12 bucks (with tax) and i'd toss one in my bag. ;) Might never get used.

    As far as weddings go, why not? It'll save in the long run over processing the film. Just take 20-30 of 'em to ritz and get a bunch of CDs, already marked with who they're from, ready to put on a gallery on .Mac or whatever service you use. ;)

    I don't think it's a big deal one way or the other. It's an 11 dollar toss away. Not everyone takes pics frequently enough to justify a larger expense of a full time digital, with memory, batteries, and disc space on their machine.

    And not everyone wants to print (or knows how to print) on their nice free HPs and Epsons. They STILL take CF cards to Ritz's and WalMart's. It's very common.

    What we have to remember is, by and large, the people on this site are very tech-savvy.

    The people that aren't will eat this up, and get very satisfactory shots from it, i'm sure. With better prints than they would get trying to print from the proprietary software to their HP printers.

    In that sense, I think Ritz has the right idea here. :D It's good marketing on their part, and they have a built-in focus group (their processing division's receipts) to show there's a market here.

    Would I ever replace my d100 or even my 885 with one? Haha. But is it something nice to have in the bag, that doesn't cost a lot, to just do some snaps? Sure. :)
     
  19. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #19
    Kodak was an example of the film/digital issue at stake here.

    And this camera is not marketed at pros - but go ahead and get one and tell me what you think. Personally, I'll probably never get one - I have a compact 3 megapixel camera and I'm getting a digital SLR soon as well. I'll be much happier getting the shots back on my own computer and not waiting for someone to process it. Especially if I'm travelling and have my laptop with me.

    There will be uses for it, weddings are a good example, but I think the whole industry is going to have even more significant change over the next couple years and digital cameras become even more powerful and popular.

    Printing out the images will still be a service oriented market and I'd wager most camera shops will be hoping to push that aspect as much as possible.

    D
     
  20. Moxiemike macrumors 68020

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    #20
    Yea. But it seems to me kodak is really doing well with their PNS digitals. Some great stuff they have out now.

    And this camera is not marketed at pros - but go ahead and get one and tell me what you think. Personally, I'll probably never get one - I have a compact 3 megapixel camera and I'm getting a digital SLR soon as well. I'll be much happier getting the shots back on my own computer and not waiting for someone to process it. Especially if I'm travelling and have my laptop with me.[/QUOTE]

    For 11 bucks, it's no great shakes. And sure, it's not marketed at pros, but I know a bunch of pros who are buying them for s&g's. Myself included. If you're gonna buy a DSLR though... don't be fooled by the 300d. I saw one the other day. Nice Camera... but i wouldn't take it in the woods with me. 100% plastic body. Kinda chintzy.

    There will be uses for it, weddings are a good example, but I think the whole industry is going to have even more significant change over the next couple years and digital cameras become even more powerful and popular.[/QUOTE]

    Exactly. But there will ALWAYS be luddites who will buy these. And i'm sure that someday, they'll be 5mp disposables that are pretty darn shabby. I saw a pic from the dakota on BBC's website and it's not horrible at all. Compared to my old Quicktake... this rocks. HAHA.

    Printing out the images will still be a service oriented market and I'd wager most camera shops will be hoping to push that aspect as much as possible.

    D
    [/QUOTE]

    And until you can get a 50 dollar archival printer, with cheap ink wells, and printing is as easy as a one touch button, you'll still see the viability in these shops. I think it's the specialty photo printing places that are being squeezed out at this point. I can get almost perfect matte photos printed 8x10 from Ritz. And they rock. I take the photos to my old favorite printing house, and they don't look much better. Why? Because I do all the post-processing in raw. Despite a tiny color shift (depending on the type of photo) between the two prints, there's not much of a difference, save for price.

    So I go to Ritz. That said, there's lots of people who DON'T wanna put the time into buying a camera, realizing they don't have enough memory, runnning out, buying more, then watching their batteries die and having to buy disposables and a charger. Then having to edit their photos, etc. etc. etc.

    Only to run out of ink on their HPs.

    ALSO, not everyone has a laptop. And this might be a nice way for someone to "go digital" for vacations, test the waters, and NOT have to have a laptop and a bunch of 256 memory cards.

    Figure, if someone is gonna buy a 2mp digital for 200 bucks... they're gonna be displeased when, for vacation, they have to drop 80 bucks on a 256mb card.

    So there is advantages both ways, and I don't think this is a "flailing in the woods in the dark" kind of marketing ploy from Ritz. ;)

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/pop_ups/03/magazine_the_disposable_digital_camera/html/3.stm

    Still... wouldn't trade my D100. Ever. ;)
     
  21. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #21
    Well, only time will tell if this will work.

    As for the 300D - not intersted either. Given the price and 6.3MP, though, something will be coming along to replace the 10D soon - both those cameras can't stay on the market together for long, they're too similar in many respects, especially image quality. Canon is going to have to up the 10D to make a better diffentiation between prosumer and pro. The 10D replacement is most likely what I'll be getting....

    D
     
  22. Moxiemike macrumors 68020

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    #22
    Heh. I doubt they'll be doing much with the 10d. Just by the fact that the 300d, they had to cripple the machine by disabling software to keep it from competing with the 10d.

    With the 1ds less than a year old, and at 11mp FF, there's not much room to compete with themselves. If anything, they'll be a new 1d coming soon, maybe at 8mp. But I think the 10d and the 6mp size is here to stay for the time being, and the only changes will be in price.

    I can't imagine them putting an 8mp sensor in the 10d and selling it at $1499 while the 1ds is at $7999. Not gonna happen.

    So you might be waiting awhile. Well.. until Nikon comes out with an 8mp D200 (which they have the tech for, through their allegiance with Sony and Fuji).

    But anyway... you can either PM me with DSLR info or whatever. We should get back on topic here.
     
  23. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

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    #23
    Now I feel all inferior with my 2.1 MP Kodak digital camera I bought with all my saved up money back in 2000. But hey, they featured my camera in Mission Impossible 2, so I was happy! :)
     
  24. Moxiemike macrumors 68020

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    #24
    Do you get good prints from your 2.1mp? Probably. Most of the people that want big MP cameras are little photoshop junkies who really don't take PHOTOGRAPHS or just like to complain about this feature or that feature that doesn't work.

    :D

    I bought a DSLR for professional reasons, and have found 6mp to be more than enough. When Nikon brings out a d200 or d300 or d2x or something, if it has some advancement that makes it worthwhile to me, i'll buy (maybe WiFi, more buffer for action shots, higher noiseless ISO, etc) but i won't just jump because it's 8mp or 10mp or 20mp.

    Like J.Lo says... it's a wang contest. :)

    What I want is a camera that's quick (for live show shots) and has relative noiseless high ISOs.

    My d100 can do up to ISO 3200 acceptably, and ISO 1600 with very little perceptible noise.

    I can do 24x36 prints on my DesignJet 120nr with not a problem. And 11x17 photos for ads. ;)

    if you're getting nice prints (which i'm sure you are) that satisfy your needs, don't feel inferior. ;)
     
  25. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

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    #25
    It's all right. It's the same one I've used for the random pictures I've posted on these forums from time to time. It does have its limitations, which can become obvious in closeups, zooms, bright or dark areas, or just in high resolution, but it gets the job done in decent enough quality. I bought it mainly because I wanted to take lots of pictures when I went to Washington state, Europe, and because scanning pictures for projects is a real pain. If I had the money, I wouldn't mind a new one, though, or maybe a video camera with a built in still function because it'd be cool to be able to use iMovie and stuff when I get OS X. As unnecessary as it may be, it can be a lot of fun just to fool around with a video camera when you go on trips or just hang out with friends at school.

    But on topic, I still don't understand the need for a throw away digital camera. The one thing people bring up is how you can get a photo CD with your prints, but I thought you could do that with any camera you use. Is there a big difference in image quality? The one thing I liked about my digital camera was the fact that you just connect with USB and upload them right to your computer.
     

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